That was…really good. I have no idea why, but I really enjoyed this. I mean, nothing about this game should be fantastic, just look at my first impressions! I even half skipped through a lot of the story! But I still really like it! And I can’t stop using exclamation marks! There are already a few reviews out for this already, but I want to get my two cents in.
Syo gets a letter saying that he got accepted to a prestigious school. He goes there because they have a really nice (and also free) cafeteria, and he loves to eat. In fact, the whole game starts with a fantasy dream involving bunny girls and food. No, it’s not what you think. Anyway, he goes over to the school, but is caught in an explosion. By the time he is found, he is told that he is already a day late for school. Not only that, there is no record of him in the school. However, because he holds the school’s admission papers, they allow him to stay, although it must be in the girl’s dorms since there is no space in the boy’s dorms.
…Oh wow, this premise is worse than I thought it would be… It’s more interesting than it looks, I swear!
Katsuragi Syo is the protagonist of the game. He’s generally a nice person and is pretty much like an adorable puppy. Seriously, he has that kind of earnest cuteness, especially when he starts to sprout lines to swoon the heroines. He loves to eat. I mean, really, he LOVES to eat. And he also has an endless black hole for a stomach. His existence is the most mysterious thing in this entire story, and it’s pretty interesting.
Inaba Yui is seemingly the girl that shows up first. She’s also the one who’s on most of the promotional art, making it seem like she’s the main heroine, but she really isn’t. Anyway, she’s a cheerful happy girl who also loves food.
The weird thing is, she shows up a lot with a tanuki tail, for no reason whatsoever. I can’t help but wonder if the art was made before they finalized the story… but even then, what’s the point of keeping the tail?
Strangely enough, she is the only character with a very awkward and stupid h-scene. Of course, I think that h-scenes are stupid in general, but here, she basically sufferers from an emotional trauma, forces the guy to have sex with her, and just suddenly becomes ok right after. Sigh…
Shirasagi Mayuri is the seemingly perfect ojou-sama, she’s the idol of the school, alongside Sakurako, her best friend. As you can see, she’s not as demure and gentle as people make her out to be. I have to say that her dark side is very amusing though. Sadly, her route doesn’t really resolve any of her conflicts, you’ll have to buy Kimi no Nagori wa Shizuka ni Yurete for that.
Kujou Kururi is the ice berg loli/mad scientist. I know, she doesn’t look like one here, but I just really like this image. I would say that her path is the most shocking in the entire game. Most of it was nothing special, but when you see the sand, it’s like someone punched you in the face. Also, she’s absolutely tiny and the h-scene feels really illegal.
Yukishiro Suzuno is a mysterious clumsy girl. For some reason, only Maxx, Syo, and Yui can see her, and she believes that she is a ghost, despite the fact that she can’t do anything ghostly (such as pass through walls). Her path can be unlocked after completing all other paths. It is the true ending and really explains much of the mystery in the story.
Other characters include a (very freaky and perverted and weird) teacher, three other students and two parents. And then, there is Maxx.
Maxx is a robot. He is a very manly robot who believes in the POWA OF FRIENDSHIP. And he is the singularly most awesome robot I have ever come across in fiction. He absolutely LOVES his shiny round metal body, and hates it when it has to go under maintenance.
If I had to sum the story up in one word, it would be “charming”. It’s funny, it’s cute, and while it can’t be considered epic it is definitely worth the time to see. Aside from the heroine routes, there is an overarching plot involving just who or what are Syo and Suzuno, and just what is the reason for the mysterious events that keeps on happening.
The first route I went through was that of Amane, and I have to say that many events within it confused me greatly. It was difficult to keep track of which plot threads was contained to the route and which actually affects the overall plot. I was actually spoiled as to the nature of what seemed to be time traveling before playing the game, and I’m somewhat thankful for it because I would have been even more confused without it.
There are some great twists, such as why Syo seems to be unconscious for a day after the explosion and the truth behind Sakurako’s health. Some twists, such as Suzuno’s connection with needles, really beings a tear to my eyes. And then, there is the meaning behind Yui’s name and the term “flyable heart” (no, it’s not something that was randomly made up, it actually has to do with the plot)… but that’s just me going off topic.
Despite the seemingly happy fluffy hilarious atmosphere, a lot of the drama is quite serious, and there are many deaths involved. The one involving sand, in particular, really shocked me. I wouldn’t say that the drama is really, really dark though. It’s definitely not enough to actually be depressing.
All the characters were brought together well, and the little connections between every character were well thought out. Even separately, the little character quirks are a lot of fun to see.
There was a lot of effort put into the school events, where there are a boatload of choices leading to a multitude of interesting outcomes. I had to get a walkthrough to find all the CGs though, that was a bit annoying.
Itou Noizi FTW! Ok, maybe not.
See, some of the images were drawn and colored BEAUTIFULLY.
Also, there isn’t as much art as I expected. I mean, there is plenty of CGs and SDCGs, but there’s a lack in character poses. Kururi has all of one pose, and while Amane has two, she turns dere later on so her tsun pose is pretty much gone.
Now, please let me say that I honestly and sincerely love Nanatsuiro drops.
Therefore, it is wholly disagreeable for me to see Sumomo and Nadeshiko’s new look. They don’t look NEARLY as cute as they did before.
Then, there are the various unrealistic scenes with bad lighting. The two above characters are supposed to be below a sheet. This seems to be a magical sheet which floats and never touches the character.
For the most part though, the art is still fantastic. Like what I said in the Asuseka review, I only nickpick on the little things when I really like the art.
At first, I didn’t like the op much, but it’s really grown on me. Now, I grin every time I hear it.
As for the BGM, there is the good and there is the bad. Fritillaria camtschatcensis and 八重咲夾竹桃 are extremely annoying, especially the former since it is played OVER and OVER again. However, the rest of the OST is really nice. There is a lot of pop tracks, along with loads of piano, flute, guitar, saxphone, and violins. My favorite tracks are 梅花藻 and A-W-R-Y. Just like Nanatsuiro drops, there is composer commentary for every track after you have unlocked the true ending.
Some of the girls are too squeaky, but overall I’d say that the voice acting was done well.
That’s how I’d describe the system in FH.There is a boatload of special effects, all of which were used nicely. I especially love the walking effect, it was just executed so well. Interestingly enough, this is the first title I’ve seen where the shape of the text box actually changes to reflect the mood.
And this one of the special boxes. As you can see, it is very, VERY pink, but I like it. To add to the color, there are character specific text colors. Unlike some other games, however, you can’t change it. This is a bit unfortunate because I really don’t like reading yellow text.
There are character pages in the extras section. This was really useful for keeping track of plot details. It also gave some explanations for what was going on in the story, making sure that the story itself wasn’t bogged down with excess exposition.
Overall, awesome system.
Total: 91/100 A
I mean, there are ZOMBIES! You like zombies, don’t you?